NEW YORK (CelebrityAccess) — Commissioner of Baseball Robert D. Manfred, Jr. announced that Major League Baseball will be back this summer, with an abbreviated 2020 regular season scheduled to start on July 23rd or July 24th.
The announcement follows extensive negotiations between the league and the MLB Players Association and the two organizations settling on health and safety protocols that will allow players to report for training by July 1st.
The abbreviated 2020 season will include just 60 games during the regular season with a focus on divisional play with the remaining portion of each Club’s games against their opposite league’s corresponding geographical division (i.e., East vs. East, Central vs. Central and West vs. West), in order to mitigate travel.
The vast majority of Major League Clubs are expected to conduct training at the ballparks in their primary home cities.
According to MLB, the health and safety of players and employees will remain priorities (though apparently not enough of a priority to postpone play for 2020) and the league is working with public health experts, infectious disease specialists and technology providers on a comprehensive approach to keep players COVID-19 free.
The vast majority of Major League Clubs are expected to conduct training at the ballparks in their primary home cities. When players arrive for training, they will be tested and allowed to begin workouts if their tests come back negative.
Players will also be subjected to temperature checks several times a day, and antibody testing will be conducted as well. Players, coaches and support staff will also undergo testing every other day during training, as well as the regular and post season.
The league’s announcement did not detail plans for bringing fans back to the stadium, but San Francisco reporter Henry Schulman reported that the league is leaving it up to individual teams to determine the best approach to live audiences, based on state and local ordinances.
“Major League Baseball is thrilled to announce that the 2020 season is on the horizon. We have provided the Players Association with a schedule to play 60 games and are excited to provide our great fans with Baseball again soon.”